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The influence of climate variables on dengue in Singapore

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In this work we correlated dengue cases with climatic variables for the city of Singapore. This was done through a Poisson Regression Model (PRM) that considers dengue cases as the dependent variable and the climatic variables (rainfall, maximum and minimum temperature and relative humidity) as independent variables. We also used Principal Components Analysis (PCA) to choose the variables that influence in the increase of the number of dengue cases in Singapore, where PC1 (Principal component 1) is represented by temperature and rainfall and PC2 (Principal component 2) is represented by relative humidity. We calculated the probability of occurrence of new cases of dengue and the relative risk of occurrence of dengue cases influenced by climatic variable. The months from July to September showed the highest probabilities of the occurrence of new cases of the disease throughout the year. This was based on an analysis of time series of maximum and minimum temperature. An interesting result was that for every 2–10°C of variation of the maximum temperature, there was an average increase of 22.2–184.6% in the number of dengue cases. For the minimum temperature, we observed that for the same variation, there was an average increase of 26.1–230.3% in the number of the dengue cases from April to August. The precipitation and the relative humidity, after analysis of correlation, were discarded in the use of Poisson Regression Model because they did not present good correlation with the dengue cases. Additionally, the relative risk of the occurrence of the cases of the disease under the influence of the variation of temperature was from 1.2–2.8 for maximum temperature and increased from 1.3–3.3 for minimum temperature. Therefore, the variable temperature (maximum and minimum) was the best predictor for the increased number of dengue cases in Singapore.
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Keywords: Poisson Regression Model; Principal Component Analysis; dengue; relative risk; temperature

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Medicine,University of Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Publication date: December 1, 2011

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